Throughout the Dallas Cowboys’ two-point loss to the Buccaneers last night, veteran place kicker Greg Zuerlein missed three kicks.
Early in the game, the former All-Pro kicker shanked a 31-yard field goal well left. Then, after the Cowboys’ first touchdown of the night, he clanked an extra point of the left goal post.
His final miss of the game was a 60-yard field goal that came up just short in the second half.
Overall, Zuerlein went 3-of-5 on field goals and 2-of-3 on extra points.
After the game, the 33-year-old kicker took full responsibility for the loss.
“If I do my job, we win that game,” he said. “So I feel bad for the guys in there that played their a– off and I didn’t hold up my end of the deal.”
While Zuerlein blames himself for the crushing defeat, Jerry Jones isn’t ready to quit on his kicker just yet.
Jones blamed Zuerlein’s early struggles on his absence through much of training camp with a back injury. Despite these missed kicks, the longtime owner still believes the 10th-year kicker is a longterm solution at the position.
“I felt like we paid the price of not really having our kicker during training camp. … The loss isn’t to be blamed on the kicker,” he said on 103.5 The Fan.
Jerry Jones on @1053thefan: “I felt like we paid the price of not really having our kicker during training camp. … The loss isn’t to be blamed on the kicker.” Jones said he still believes Greg Zuerlein is the long-term answer for them at kicker
— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) September 10, 2021
After last night’s 31-29 loss, Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy shared a similar sentiment.
Zuerlein was able to knock in a late-game field goal to give Dallas a lead with under two minutes to go. Unfortunately, that was too much time for Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay offense.
“I have great faith and confidence in him, and we need him,” McCarthy said. “He made the clutch, clutch kick there at the end to give us the lead before the two-minute drive by Tampa.”
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